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Innovation and Diffusion of Clean/Green Technology: Can Patent Commons Help?

  • Bronwyn H. Hall
  • Christian Helmers

This paper explores the characteristics of 238 patents on 94 "inventions" contributed by major multinational innovators to the "Eco-Patent Commons", which provides royalty-free access to third parties to patented climate change related innovations. By comparing the pledged patents to other patents in the same technologies or held by the same multinationals, we investigate the motives of the contributing firms as well as the potential for such commons to encourage innovation and diffusion of climate change related technologies. This study, therefore, indirectly provides evidence on the role of patents in the development and diffusion of green technologies. More generally, the paper sheds light on the performance of hybrid forms of knowledge management that combine open innovation and patenting.

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File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w16920.pdf
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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 16920.

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Date of creation: Mar 2011
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Publication status: published as Hall, Bronwyn H. & Helmers, Christian, 2013. "Innovation and diffusion of clean/green technology: Can patent commons help?," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 33-51.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16920
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  1. Adam Jaffe & Manuel Trajtenberg, 1999. "International Knowledge Flows: Evidence From Patent Citations," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 8(1-2), pages 105-136.
  2. Mowery, David C., 2010. "Military R&D and Innovation," Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, Elsevier.
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  4. Lei, Zhen & Juneja, Rakhi & Wright, Brian D, 2009. "Patents versus patenting: implications of intellectual property protection for biological research," MPRA Paper 34640, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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  7. Arora, Ashish & Gambardella, Alfonso, 2010. "The Market for Technology," Handbook of the Economics of Innovation, Elsevier.
  8. Bronwyn H. Hall & Christian Helmers, 2010. "The role of patent protection in (clean/green) technology transfer," CSAE Working Paper Series 2010-23, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  9. Daniel K.N. Johnson & David Popp, 2001. "Forced Out of the Closet: The Impact of the American Inventors Protection Act on the Timing of Patent Disclosure," NBER Working Papers 8374, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Hall, Bronwyn H. & Mairesse, Jacques & Turner, Laure, 2006. "Identifying Age, Cohort and Period Effects in Scientific Research Productivity - Discussion and Illustration Using Simulated and Actual Data on French Physicists," MERIT Working Papers 042, United Nations University - Maastricht Economic and Social Research Institute on Innovation and Technology (MERIT).
  11. Lampe, Ryan & Moser, Petra, 2010. "Do Patent Pools Encourage Innovation? Evidence from the Nineteenth-Century Sewing Machine Industry," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 70(04), pages 898-920, December.
  12. Harhoff, Dietmar & Scherer, Frederic M. & Vopel, Katrin, 2003. "Citations, family size, opposition and the value of patent rights," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(8), pages 1343-1363, September.
  13. Hall, B. & Jaffe, A. & Trajtenberg, M., 2001. "The NBER Patent Citations Data File: Lessons, Insights and Methodological Tools," Papers 2001-29, Tel Aviv.
  14. Ashish Arora & Alfonso Gambardella, 2010. "Ideas for rent: an overview of markets for technology," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(3), pages 775-803, June.
  15. Sapsalis, Eleftherios & van Pottelsberghe de la Potterie, Bruno & Navon, Ran, 2006. "Academic versus industry patenting: An in-depth analysis of what determines patent value," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(10), pages 1631-1645, December.
  16. Maria Pluvia Zuniga & Dominique Guellec, 2009. "Who Licenses out Patents and Why?: Lessons from a Business Survey," OECD Science, Technology and Industry Working Papers 2009/5, OECD Publishing.
  17. Lanjouw, Jean O & Pakes, Ariel & Putnam, Jonathan, 1998. "How to Count Patents and Value Intellectual Property: The Uses of Patent Renewal and Application Data," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 46(4), pages 405-32, December.
  18. Layne-Farrar, Anne & Lerner, Josh, 2011. "To join or not to join: Examining patent pool participation and rent sharing rules," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 294-303, March.
  19. Christian Helmers & Bronwyn H. Hall, 2010. "The role of patent protection in (clean/green) technology transfer," Economics Series Working Papers CSAE WPS/2010-23, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
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